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Episode 9.3 — Time Crunch: Day 3

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I would love to address something.

Yesterday, Matt said that the podcasts would be judged on how "funny" they were. Today, we're told that TL won because of how "engaging" they were.

Did they not listen to the podcast where they said this, because this is fucking blowing my mind. First of all, just piss poor judging from all sides. I know Matt said it was a clean slate, but it still felt like a clear nod was given to TL. In fact, it almost became a "how can we make this shit more tolerable" executive meeting when they broke down the show. Also, if you want an engaging podcast, listen to a NPR podcast. I have come to believe that if I want a comedy podcast, I should go to Earwolf. Unfortunately, if you want a shitty couple talking about penis sizes, you're going to listen to TL.

Also, Frank said that even if LHR got the hour with Zach, they couldn't use any scripts and had to shoot the shit with him. Well, that's kinda fucked up as well. You're telling a SKETCH COMEDY PODCAST to act like an INTERVIEW PODCAST in the course of 1 hour. How is this not rigged?

Then, the icing on the cupcake, you tell them that maybe it would have been a good idea to name drop Zach in a sketch. Look, I don't care if Zach dropped out at the last minute, the most professional thing to do would to go about business as usual. And the sketch was funny. I'm sorry, I don't see how it didn't beat out two aussies bitching and moaning about kicking people out of a radio studio or a couple talking about their first time.

I would not say the "Earwolf" brand is tarnished, but I would worry about the fairness of the competition. I think at some point, you have to allow for the audience to help decide who to pick to be the next Earwolf podcast. Because, let's face it, you're going to come to us and ask us to support Earwolf, we might as well have a say to who gets in.

But I loved LHR and their FTW attitude. Earwolf would be stupid not to go back to them in a couple of months and offer a smaller, try out contract to test it out with it's format!

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I would love to address something.

Yesterday, Matt said that the podcasts would be judged on how "funny" they were. Today, we're told that TL won because of how "engaging" they were.

Did they not listen to the podcast where they said this, because this is fucking blowing my mind. First of all, just piss poor judging from all sides. I know Matt said it was a clean slate, but it still felt like a clear nod was given to TL. In fact, it almost became a "how can we make this shit more tolerable" executive meeting when they broke down the show. Also, if you want an engaging podcast, listen to a NPR podcast. I have come to believe that if I want a comedy podcast, I should go to Earwolf. Unfortunately, if you want a shitty couple talking about penis sizes, you're going to listen to TL.

Also, Frank said that even if LHR got the hour with Zach, they couldn't use any scripts and had to shoot the shit with him. Well, that's kinda fucked up as well. You're telling a SKETCH COMEDY PODCAST to act like an INTERVIEW PODCAST in the course of 1 hour. How is this not rigged?

Then, the icing on the cupcake, you tell them that maybe it would have been a good idea to name drop Zach in a sketch. Look, I don't care if Zach dropped out at the last minute, the most professional thing to do would to go about business as usual. And the sketch was funny. I'm sorry, I don't see how it didn't beat out two aussies bitching and moaning about kicking people out of a radio studio or a couple talking about their first time.

I would not say the "Earwolf" brand is tarnished, but I would worry about the fairness of the competition. I think at some point, you have to allow for the audience to help decide who to pick to be the next Earwolf podcast. Because, let's face it, you're going to come to us and ask us to support Earwolf, we might as well have a say to who gets in.

But I loved LHR and their FTW attitude. Earwolf would be stupid not to go back to them in a couple of months and offer a smaller, try out contract to test it out with it's format!

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On Sept. 7, 2011, the Earwolf forums became self-aware.

[attachment=6729,145]

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On Sept. 7, 2011, the Earwolf forums became self-aware.

[attachment=6729,145]

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@Jeff: I understand your issues. Some rants take it too far, and you shouldn't take those as being representative of the majority of listeners. And even if it seems like there's more complaints, that's in part because people are more likely to write a complaint than praise. And it's also because this is a show that issues criticism and judgment, so it elicits those types of responses. So don't take it too hard, i'd say only a small percentage of listeners really thinks anything major is really wrong with the show.
 
I don't think anybody involved in the show has done a bad job, certainly no conspiricies, and the idea that this show has tarnished or even hurt the Earwolf brand is absurd. In every case, I feel the judges tried their best to determine who deserved to go out based on what they heard. The comments I usually make have to do with disagreeing with the judgement, but sometimes, like this week, consistancy in the criteria for judging seems to be lacking.
 
Maybe if the listeners heard the whole deliberation process, it would be more clear. Or maybe it wouldn't. Obviously it's all based on opinion, but a little more clearly defined criteria for the challenges and the judging process would go a long way, especially since the judges rotate from week to week and largely have no prior knowledge of the shows themselves or what has transpired on Earwolf Challenge before they were on.

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@Jeff: I understand your issues. Some rants take it too far, and you shouldn't take those as being representative of the majority of listeners. And even if it seems like there's more complaints, that's in part because people are more likely to write a complaint than praise. And it's also because this is a show that issues criticism and judgment, so it elicits those types of responses. So don't take it too hard, i'd say only a small percentage of listeners really thinks anything major is really wrong with the show.
 
I don't think anybody involved in the show has done a bad job, certainly no conspiricies, and the idea that this show has tarnished or even hurt the Earwolf brand is absurd. In every case, I feel the judges tried their best to determine who deserved to go out based on what they heard. The comments I usually make have to do with disagreeing with the judgement, but sometimes, like this week, consistancy in the criteria for judging seems to be lacking.
 
Maybe if the listeners heard the whole deliberation process, it would be more clear. Or maybe it wouldn't. Obviously it's all based on opinion, but a little more clearly defined criteria for the challenges and the judging process would go a long way, especially since the judges rotate from week to week and largely have no prior knowledge of the shows themselves or what has transpired on Earwolf Challenge before they were on.

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@Scott I mentioned this in the Day 2 thread, but I'd like to get your feedback on what the contestants turned in vs. what you were expecting. Mainly, when you conceived of the challenge, did you intend for them to respond to the situation in their submission? Or go about business as usual in 30 mins? Did you want the initial reveal to be that the guest backed out or that they got pranked?
 
I'm mainly just curious and not furious, because the judges did not have criteria about this and had to judge otherwise. LDDC and LHR had responses on the ends of the spectrum for ignoring/addressing the prank and TL found the middle ground.

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@Scott I mentioned this in the Day 2 thread, but I'd like to get your feedback on what the contestants turned in vs. what you were expecting. Mainly, when you conceived of the challenge, did you intend for them to respond to the situation in their submission? Or go about business as usual in 30 mins? Did you want the initial reveal to be that the guest backed out or that they got pranked?
 
I'm mainly just curious and not furious, because the judges did not have criteria about this and had to judge otherwise. LDDC and LHR had responses on the ends of the spectrum for ignoring/addressing the prank and TL found the middle ground.

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@Jeff
.
Well look, I'm not about to out myself as an American Idol viewer on this forum (the SkyNet comparison is apt.) But surely you can imagine a hypothetical scenario, in your mind, where the audience both learns a great deal about podcasting...AND the judging is haphazard and meant mostly for entertainment purposes?
.
Ok, allow it to exit the world of hypothesis. It's real! It's *this* show!
.
There is literally no way to listen to this show and come away believing that there are any standard judging/elimination criteria. I defy you or any other producer/judge to put something on e-paper that can prove otherwise. And that's ok! I'm just saying you guys should embrace it, that's all.

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@Jeff
.
Well look, I'm not about to out myself as an American Idol viewer on this forum (the SkyNet comparison is apt.) But surely you can imagine a hypothetical scenario, in your mind, where the audience both learns a great deal about podcasting...AND the judging is haphazard and meant mostly for entertainment purposes?
.
Ok, allow it to exit the world of hypothesis. It's real! It's *this* show!
.
There is literally no way to listen to this show and come away believing that there are any standard judging/elimination criteria. I defy you or any other producer/judge to put something on e-paper that can prove otherwise. And that's ok! I'm just saying you guys should embrace it, that's all.

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I really need to get off these forums and get some work done...but until then!

[attachment=6735,146]

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I really need to get off these forums and get some work done...but until then!

[attachment=6735,146]

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@KC - when I first thought of the idea, it was based on the situation of, "Okay, a guest backed out and you still have to put out a show. GO!" No one ever expected them to mention it. So the fact that LHR didn't address the situation was perfectly fine by me. That the others did was up to them, because everyone uses what is going on in their lives in their art in a different manner. 
.

I wish that were made clearer to the judges - that the situation should be addressed accoridng to each show's preference. But to pretend LHR's sketch was flawless and not worthy of being cut this week is absurd.
.

Remember everyone - the challenges are here to be FUN and CHALLENGE the contestants - otherwise we should all just pick our favorite at the beginning and award them the prize.

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@KC - when I first thought of the idea, it was based on the situation of, "Okay, a guest backed out and you still have to put out a show. GO!" No one ever expected them to mention it. So the fact that LHR didn't address the situation was perfectly fine by me. That the others did was up to them, because everyone uses what is going on in their lives in their art in a different manner. 
.

I wish that were made clearer to the judges - that the situation should be addressed accoridng to each show's preference. But to pretend LHR's sketch was flawless and not worthy of being cut this week is absurd.
.

Remember everyone - the challenges are here to be FUN and CHALLENGE the contestants - otherwise we should all just pick our favorite at the beginning and award them the prize.

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@Julia Hays
"Ullrich listened while the Forum laid it all down: The Challenge, Judgment Day, the history of things to come. It's not everyday you find out that you're responsible for 3 billion angry posts. He took it pretty well. " [attachment=6737,147]

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@Julia Hays
"Ullrich listened while the Forum laid it all down: The Challenge, Judgment Day, the history of things to come. It's not everyday you find out that you're responsible for 3 billion angry posts. He took it pretty well. " [attachment=6737,147]

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@Scott Thanks, that makes sense. I agree it would have been good for the judges to know that up front. Because hearing them call "bullshit" on LHR's sketch because they didn't mention the guest fake out was really frustrating. The sketch wasn't that great, maybe even considering the time constraints. But judging the sketch in the challenge context should have been the focus on the judgment, not whether they incorporated the fake out into the submission. Especially because it could (and did) go either way—with valid reasons for both.

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@Scott Thanks, that makes sense. I agree it would have been good for the judges to know that up front. Because hearing them call "bullshit" on LHR's sketch because they didn't mention the guest fake out was really frustrating. The sketch wasn't that great, maybe even considering the time constraints. But judging the sketch in the challenge context should have been the focus on the judgment, not whether they incorporated the fake out into the submission. Especially because it could (and did) go either way—with valid reasons for both.

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Not that this thread needs any more filler: but I feel I put something out into the general conversation that is being misinterpreted.
When I said this week "damaged the Earwolf brand", I was taking a term from the design/advertising world and putting it an thread without proper context. I now feel I should apologize for being a pretentious douche-bag. Sorry.
 
I didn't to mean to imply a this week was a permanent blemish or an indelible tarnishing of the Earwolf name. Brands are damaged every day. In minor ways, like this, and in major ways like the Gulf Oil Spill damaging the BP brand.
 
What I meant is that this challenge was not up the usual standard of Earwolf, and not consistent with what we had come to expect from the challenge. I felt it was relevant because this is intrinsically part of the judgement section of the Earwolf challenge.
 
The Challenge was to find a podcast which best fit the brand values of Earwolf, and would sit inside the Earwolf family or brand, for a 1 year contract. Who is going to do the best job of keeping up that high standard associated with Earwolf and not embarrass the Earwolf name by being unfunny, or ill-conceived, or unprofessional, or having poor audio quality, etc. That's what validated the judges' feedback.
 
The point was, the execution of this week's challenge did feel ill-concieved or poorly executed to many of the listeners. And your audience are the ones who perceive your brand and it's associations. When your audience's initial reaction is -- this is unfair, or this is frustrating, or this is unprofessional, of course that does damage. It's only if that reaction is repeated over time, that becomes the primary association with your brand and you have a major problem.
 
I wasn't implying this week has changed anyone's entire perception of the Earwolf brand. But I felt it was pertinent to the discussion of why people had been so incensed with this week's challenge.
 
Again, my apologies for adding to the confusion.

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Not that this thread needs any more filler: but I feel I put something out into the general conversation that is being misinterpreted.
When I said this week "damaged the Earwolf brand", I was taking a term from the design/advertising world and putting it an thread without proper context. I now feel I should apologize for being a pretentious douche-bag. Sorry.
 
I didn't to mean to imply a this week was a permanent blemish or an indelible tarnishing of the Earwolf name. Brands are damaged every day. In minor ways, like this, and in major ways like the Gulf Oil Spill damaging the BP brand.
 
What I meant is that this challenge was not up the usual standard of Earwolf, and not consistent with what we had come to expect from the challenge. I felt it was relevant because this is intrinsically part of the judgement section of the Earwolf challenge.
 
The Challenge was to find a podcast which best fit the brand values of Earwolf, and would sit inside the Earwolf family or brand, for a 1 year contract. Who is going to do the best job of keeping up that high standard associated with Earwolf and not embarrass the Earwolf name by being unfunny, or ill-conceived, or unprofessional, or having poor audio quality, etc. That's what validated the judges' feedback.
 
The point was, the execution of this week's challenge did feel ill-concieved or poorly executed to many of the listeners. And your audience are the ones who perceive your brand and it's associations. When your audience's initial reaction is -- this is unfair, or this is frustrating, or this is unprofessional, of course that does damage. It's only if that reaction is repeated over time, that becomes the primary association with your brand and you have a major problem.
 
I wasn't implying this week has changed anyone's entire perception of the Earwolf brand. But I felt it was pertinent to the discussion of why people had been so incensed with this week's challenge.
 
Again, my apologies for adding to the confusion.

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@Scott and @Jeff - I like the earwolf challenge. You guys took a huge risk and are treading new waters with this idea. There aren't too many shows out there that I just can't wait to listen to. THIS show is one of them. I don't always agree with everything., but its not my show.
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Whether I end up listening to TL or TLDDC in the future is still up in the air. Much like American Idol - just because Rueben Studdard won doesn't mean everyone who watched the show is going to empty their wallets to grab his albums.
-
Thank you for introducing me to LHR and F+ :)

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